Zimbabwe, EU to discuss sanctions

2012-05-06 16:18

Harare - Zimbabwe will send government ministers this week to hold talks with European Union officials over sanctions slapped on President Robert Mugabe and his circle a decade ago, state media said on Sunday.

"We have confirmed the meeting and the ministers will leave on Tuesday" for Brussels, foreign affairs secretary Joey Bimha told the state-owned Sunday Mail newspaper.

He said the officials were travelling at the EU's invitation and would meet with Catherine Ashton, EU foreign affairs chief and vice president of the European Commission.

Six ministers from the three main political parties in the coalition government of Mugabe and Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai will attend, the Sunday Mail said.

The paper quoted Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa saying the Zimbabwe delegation's objective is to push for the removal of sanctions on Mugabe and top officials in his Zanu-PF party.

"Our position is that the sanctions should be removed unconditionally and that is what we are going to take to the table," Chinamasa said.

"We are happy that they have invited us and we pray that the goodwill they have shown in inviting us will also be extended in removing the embargo."

The 27-nation EU removed a visa ban and asset freeze on 51 individuals in February to encourage "further progress" of political reforms in Zimbabwe.

It also suspended the travel ban on Chinamasa and Foreign Affairs Minister Simbarashe Mumbengegwi so they could travel to Brussels for talks, but maintained asset freezes against them.

But 112 people are still subject to the measures.

Human Rights Watch had urged the EU to maintain the travel ban and asset freeze on Mugabe until the country follows through on promised political reforms.

The EU sanctions were imposed in 2002 following elections marred by widespread violence and intimidation.

Mugabe, who is 88, has ruled since independence from Britain in 1980.

After failed elections in 2008, he was forced into a power-sharing government with his rival Tsvangirai, a move meant to clear the way to new polls.

  • fred.fraser.12 - 2012-05-06 16:28

    Waste of a trip. It isn't going to change until free and fair elections happen in Zim.

  • Sidney Gilroy - 2012-05-06 16:58

    This isn't about Mugabe and his inner circle. The EU will blatantly inform the delegation what the terms are for the sanctions to be dropped in the event of Mugabe dying and Zimbabwe holding free and fair elections with IEC observers. Mugabe will not see Christmas, and the EU knows this.

  • Vic - 2012-05-06 17:36

    Lift travel sanctions against Mugabe only, so he can be arrested and sent to the Hague to face trial for Genocide and Crimes against Humanity.

  • Mario Bisogno - 2012-05-06 17:42

    Mr Robert Mugabe hates whites europeans so why would he want the travel bans lifted?

  • Anthony - 2012-05-06 17:49

    mugabe your ministers are more stupid than you are all of you brain dead?

  • georgebrightons - 2012-05-06 18:18

    Mugabe has won, he has defeated Imperialists and Capitalists. EU has decided to remove sanctions against African hero Mugabe. Mugabe for President of AFRICA. Quote by Mugabe\When the West decided to be hostile to us, we decided an EAST LOOK POLICY\ It really worked indeed.

      AnthonyfromAfrica - 2012-05-06 18:54

      You insult millions of Zimbabweans with this CRAP. Zimbabwe, the ONLY country in the world, where millions of their citizens, went over the border into a neghbouring country, not to better their lives, BUT TO STAY ALIVE. Zimbabwe, the ONLY country in the world, where mothers left their own kids in care of relatives, than crawled under barbed wire into SA, to earn money so hat their loved ones at home would stay ALIVE East Look Policy; That is the policy where this CRIMINAL THUG mugabe and his RICH BITCH wife grace can spend their stolen loot in Malaysia!!!!

      tnmunyai - 2012-05-06 20:23

      Yes! Yes!

      georgebrightons - 2012-05-06 20:40

      The EU,US,Britain and formations of Imperialism and Capitalism made it impossible for Zimbabweans to make a living in their country through sanctions. Britain promised to pay for hectares of land owned by white farmers in Zimbabwe during Lancaster meeting. Britain did not pay, those millions pressurised Mugabe to take their land back from the white British settlers. Come elections in Zim', those millions will go back and vote for Mugabe.(Zau-PF) Those millions declared that Zim' will never ever be a British colony again.

      willium.moyo - 2012-05-06 21:08

      You suck wena stupid moron. No development has taken place since 1980 and you're busy hero worshipping M'gabe. Health services so poor that even the president feels ashamed to utilise them. You're stupid indeed. I'm a zimbabwean, but this..........

      Simon - 2012-05-07 09:14

      wat are u doing in Mzansi

      Thami - 2012-05-07 09:20

      Siyabonga @georgebrightons. Well said.Victory to Zimbabwe and the rest of Africa

      gerard.lindner - 2012-05-08 08:47

      @georgebrightons, zimbabwe infringed on the terms of the agreement when it was found that the acquisition process was full of corrupt practices, such as ministers and party cadres acquiring prime and at the states expense. Furthermore 100million punds in budgetary support given to zim (of 500) could have been used optionally for landreform, but was not, and the agreement formally expired in 1996. Lastly sanctions had little to no effect on zimbabweans because they are only aimed at targeted politicians (about 50)- travel bans, buying propertie, asset freezing, etc - and bear no resemblance to real econmic sanctions. Get your facts straight please

      gerard.lindner - 2012-05-08 08:48

      Sorry for the spelling mistakes...

  • tnmunyai - 2012-05-06 20:15

    Lelelel... Lalala...lololo...lululu..lilili.....! Eu sunctioned itsself thinking that it sunctioning Mugabe. Now they want Mugabe to lift the sunction. It is tense in europe. They don't have life without Africa. Since they sunctioned themself they now experiencing economical crises and the solution is to call Mugabe before things became worse. Viva Mugabe viva! U r true African.

      Louis - 2012-05-06 20:43

      Obviously you don't have 2 brain sells working

      ian.levinson.7 - 2012-05-06 21:03

      omg, another case of DUH too many

  • Louis - 2012-05-06 20:42

    Force Mugabe out FIRST! No negotiations until Mugabe is out.

      comurray - 2012-05-07 11:33

      Actually he needs to be rubbed out before any sanctions are lifted, no member og Mugabe's family can take over either.

  • Glenview - 2012-05-07 08:57

    this is victory for mugabe !!!! zim will never be a colony again

      AnthonyfromAfrica - 2012-05-07 09:50

      Strange.......................!!!!! MILLIONS of Zimbabweans have LEFT their country !!! And MILLIONS of AFRICANS have moved to France !! to such an extend that the French had to tighten their border control, otherwise half of Africa would move there....!!! Is it possible, you are talking a bit of BS ???

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